Street Art: Colors of Cartagena

Maria Mulata, street art in Cartagena

This black bird, known locally as Maria Mulata, is the official bird of Cartagena de Indias. Mural of the same name, near Plaza de Trinidad by Yurika, inspired by a traditional story about the bird told to the artist by some older ladies in the neighborhood of Getsemani.

Street Art in Cartagena

Cartagena is already so full of vibrant color; it’s hard to imagine street art wouldn’t get lost in the kaleidoscope. Beyond the colonial architecture, doors and entryways painted in pastels and contrasting brights, the balconies laden with purple and white blooms, there are some wonderful examples of urban art. We devoted a whole afternoon to simply walking and searching for street art in Cartagena. The slideshow below features some of our favorites. Click on any of the thumbnails at the bottom of the post to see a larger image.

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Getsemani Celebrates Urban Art

Most of the street art in Cartagena is concentrated in the neighborhood of Getsemani. This was historically where the economically disadvantaged and slaves made their homes. It’s still very much a neighborhood of the common man. Some of the street art works are simple and basic, but Getsemani’s collection also includes pieces by well-known UK artist Fin DAC among other renowned artists. Check out his piece, “La Heroica,” along with some of the best street art in Cartagena on Calle de la Sierpe.

In December 2013, Getsemani was chosen as the location of the First International Festival of Urban Art, “Ciudad Mural” (Mural City). Leaders in the fight for Colombian independence emerged from this neighborhood, as did many other politicians, artists and personalities. As such, it was the perfect place to host the first festival. International artists worked with the community to learn what messages they wanted to convey and transformed those ideas into some amazing works. The urban art gallery that was created not only beautified deteriorated buildings and walls. It will serve as an additional draw for tourists while hopefully conveying the area’s social, cultural and historic realities.

Other Highlights

The Big Wall piece entitled “Prisma Afro” dominates the center of the city. At over 100-feet/35m, it’s the tallest in Colombia. It was created by Yurika, Cazdos, Zas, Ecksone and Ospen as a tribute to African-Colombian women. The video below by Vertigo Graffiti shows how it was made.


About the author

Tamara and Donny have wandered together since 2004, with no cure for their insatiable wanderlust. They write about discovering new destinations including beautiful photography, plus budget travel tips and how to give back through travel.